Something rather fishy occurred within the past few hours at CNN.com.
Some time Friday, the cable network's website posted a piece entiitled "Treasury chief: Tax rebate checks to go out in May" which included the following (emphasis added, h/t NB reader Chandy):
The package, which passed the Senate 81-16, will send rebate checks to 130 million Americans in amounts of $300 to $600 for people who have an income between $3,000 and $75,000, plus $300 per child. Couples earning up to $150,000 would get $1,200.
The checks are an advance on next year's refunds, and most, if not all of the money, will be deducted from taxpayers' refunds in 12 months' time.
If you click on the link to the article, the above-bolded sentence is nowhere to be found. Yet, it certainly did exist, as CNN.com indicated the following blog linking to this piece asking:
Can This Be True
Does this mean what i think it means? From CNN:
The (tax rebate) checks are an advance on next year's refunds, and most, if not all of the money, will be deducted from taxpayers' refunds in 12 months' time.
If this is right, the vaunted "rebates" are in fact loans to be repaid on next year's taxes. So I'm going to get a check that I haven't asked for, and that check is going to increase my tax liability next year, and for this I'm supposed to be grateful?
Can this possibly be true, or is it some kind of misprint?
UPDATE: Sharp-eyed reader Teri notes that the curious sentence quoted above has been removed from the article. Hmm...
Several other blogs have noticed this as well.
This raises two interesting questions: Is this sentence true, and CNN just doesn't want readers to know about it, or; did the author get it wrong, and CNN did a fast delete rather than an update with a retraction?
*****Update: Tipster Chandy has provided the following screen-cap of the original article: